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Thread: quilting

  1. #1
    Member barbmike678's Avatar
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    Hi all ... I have made several quilts in the past three years ... but have not dared to quilt any of them. I have made some backpacks/pocketbooks for my girls and quilted those ... I do not have a long arm quilting machine, but my Viking Designer 1 can do free motion quilting. I have never had any training and everything is done kind of out there on my own. But I thought maybe some of you experienced ladies might have a word or two of advice for me.

  2. #2
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    You can go out on the internet and watch tutorials on video--check out utube, where you can search fmq and get a couple of good ones. Then, practice, practice, practice!! ;-)

  3. #3
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    go to http://www.youtube.com and type in quilting videos or machine quilting and you can watch lots of videos

    Karen

  4. #4
    Super Member Katrine's Avatar
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    I only learned to do it by watching, reading and lots of practice. Practice movement with pencil and paper, have a go on "small sandwiches" doing simple shapes. You will find it becomes easier the more you do it.
    There are lots of videos on youtube which will help - have a look at Leah Day's free motion quilting blog
    http://www.freemotionquilting.blogspot.com/
    There are video clips on here too

  5. #5
    Super Member Prism99's Avatar
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    You don't have to start out with free motion quilting. I think its a lot easier to start with a walking foot and just make wavy lines both ways for cross hatching. That way you don't have to worry about making even stitches or staying in a straight line; the machine takes care of stitch length, and whatever you do will look as if you intended it!

    Another suggestion I would make is to starch your backing fabric (I starch mine heavily) before creating the quilt sandwich. Starch stabilizes the backing fabric so you are much less likely to get unwanted puckers and tucks.

    I would also recommend spray basting the quilt sandwich. This is much faster and easier than more traditional methods. There are several threads on the board about how to spray baste.

    Free motion quilting is probably the hardest of all machine quilting techniques to master. Using a walking foot is much easier, and perhaps a better place for a beginner to start.

  6. #6
    Super Member mpspeedy's Avatar
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    I know I sound like a broken record but why does everyone assume that they have to machine quilt? Hand quilting has been around for hundreds of years. You don't have to use any electricity, you can watch TV, listen to a book on tape or even share conversations with family or friends while quilting. If it is a small project it is even portable. I always take some quilting along on our vacations. I have quilted on cruise ships and any time we are traveling by car or ground transportation. It has been announced that handsewing or quilting actually lowers your blood pressure. For those of you who have family demands it is a good excuse to sit still as your lap and or hands are full. When I use a sewing machine I tend to sew very fast. My former boss in a Bernina shop used to push the half speed button on my machine when I was doing the custom sewing for her business. I am quick at handquilting also from at least 40 years of experience but it is possible to handquilt a queen size quilt in six weeks or less just working several hours a day. I know in this "do it now" society that we live in that seems like a very long time. While I would like to make every quilt I have ever dreamed of and use up all of my stash before I die I know that will not happen even if I had a long arm and sewed 24 hrs a day. Handquilting allows me to still be sociable, spend time with my family and friends and still make lots of quilts.

  7. #7
    Member barbmike678's Avatar
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    I would love to hand quilt ... but unfortunately I can't... I have had surgery on my right wrist and had it fused because of degenerative arthritis and now I don't have full motion of that wrist. If I try to hand sew for even a few minutes my hand goes to sleep.

  8. #8
    Junior Member Keaghank's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mpspeedy
    I know I sound like a broken record but why does everyone assume that they have to machine quilt? Hand quilting has been around for hundreds of years. You don't have to use any electricity, you can watch TV, listen to a book on tape or even share conversations with family or friends while quilting. If it is a small project it is even portable. I always take some quilting along on our vacations. I have quilted on cruise ships and any time we are traveling by car or ground transportation. It has been announced that handsewing or quilting actually lowers your blood pressure. For those of you who have family demands it is a good excuse to sit still as your lap and or hands are full. When I use a sewing machine I tend to sew very fast. My former boss in a Bernina shop used to push the half speed button on my machine when I was doing the custom sewing for her business. I am quick at handquilting also from at least 40 years of experience but it is possible to handquilt a queen size quilt in six weeks or less just working several hours a day. I know in this "do it now" society that we live in that seems like a very long time. While I would like to make every quilt I have ever dreamed of and use up all of my stash before I die I know that will not happen even if I had a long arm and sewed 24 hrs a day. Handquilting allows me to still be sociable, spend time with my family and friends and still make lots of quilts.
    I know I'll be hand quilting my first few projects at least. Any tips? Do you need any special needles or thread to do it? And thanks for bringing it up!!

  9. #9
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I hand quilted 24 quilts before machine quilting really became popular and all the new techiques. I plan to do one baby quilt and then, no more. I have made 36 machine quilted quilts and I like the looks of them much better and I can make 12 quilts in a year, lots more than I could ever hand quilt. I never felt it relaxing and my Husband watches TV in the evenings and we talk also. We work together every day and spend all weekends and evenings together. Kids have been gone for years and live their own lives. There is no right or wrong way to quilt, to each her own. At 64, it is hard to tell how many productive years I may have left and I'm not about to waste any.

  10. #10
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    I quilt mine in the ditch and I am far from perfect. My machine has a special foot that helps follow the seam line and it gets the job done. Nobody has ever looked at my quilts and said "Well, Martina, your SID lines are not perfect - tsk tsk" so I keep working at getting better.

    If you are interested at learning FMQ, I'd suggest checking out the tutorials on Leah Day's blog. She has a lot of sample patterns to show and she works on small squares to practice.

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